Minnesota Hillel and JCRC Condemn Swastika at University of Minnesota

February 9, 2017

Minneapolis, MN – Minnesota Hillel and the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas (JCRC) issued the following statement:

“The Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas (JCRC) and Minnesota Hillel condemn the swastika scrawled on the door of a Jewish student’s dorm room at the University of Minnesota. We are deeply concerned by this incident and we urge anyone with information about the vandalism to come forward and report it to law enforcement. We will continue to monitor the situation,” said Steve Hunegs, executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas (JCRC).

“Unfortunately, this is not the first time an incident like this has occurred on our campus this academic year,” said Benjie Kaplan, executive director of Minnesota Hillel.

Kaplan adds: “These types of hateful incidents are unacceptable on the University of Minnesota campus and will not be tolerated. Minnesota Hillel is working closely with the Office of Student Affairs and University Police to ensure this incident, and others, are taken with the utmost seriousness, and to prevent these incidents from reoccurring. We are also working with our partners at the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas.

“Additionally, we are working with our university and community partners to ensure all Jewish students and community members feel safe and welcomed at the University of Minnesota. Minnesota Hillel is here for all students and faculty impacted by these incidents, and we welcome you to visit us at the Hillel building across from campus (at 1521 University Ave SE) if you’d like to engage in discussion about proactive ways to address these issues.

“As members of the Jewish and University community, we stand with others who have been victimized by hate on campus this year. We join our partners and friends in our dedication to creating a campus climate where all are valued and all feel safe.”

Finally, Hunegs adds: “Perpetrators of these types of incidents are intent on spreading a message of hate and challenging the openness and respectful atmosphere of our community. Collectively, we reject these chilling acts and the hate they represent. The recent spike in hate incidents both nationally and locally directed against Jews and other minorities is deeply disturbing.”

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As the public affairs voice of the Jewish community, the JCRC fights anti-Semitism and prejudice, advocates for Israel, provides Holocaust education, promotes tolerance and social justice, and builds bridges across the Jewish and broader communities.